This Digital Edition requires Flash 9.0.115 or above to activate some rich media components.

Please click the following link to download and install: Get Adobe Flash player
When you are finished installing, please return to this window and PRESS F5 to view this edition.

Description: Chois Connection is a statewide homeschool magazine in Idaho with stories and articles that feature everything important to home educators.

Convention iSSue 2014 Connection Spring 2014 a magazine for idaho home educators How did you wind up Here Carol Barnier What Would Jesus Drive Bill Jack ConvinCing CritiCS Linda Patchin You can be your child s Reading Specialist Faith Berens Renew Your Subscription Today 2 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2013 winter 2014 WEBSITE .................................................................................................................................... Introducing a new look for CHOIS. Please visit us at Hello Spring Homeschool Friends I look forward to green grass blossoming flowers and the remembrance of God s regenerative work in my life as mirrored by the emergence of the coming spring. I hope you love it too. Spring is also a time to prepare for the rejuvenation that the next CHOIS Convention is offering. We have been working hard all winter to prepare another fantastic event for Idaho homeschool families. In this issue you will find our special Convention Insert. We have tucked in as much information as we possibly can to help you plan for this special weekend. We hope that you will enjoy reading articles by our two Keynote speakers Bill Jack and Carol Barnier. Bill will be providing two keynote sessions as well as six workshops that are designed to be our teen program for 2014. We re moving our teens to a larger room to accomodate the many adults that we suspect will want to join their teens in hearing all that Bill has to offer.This is a fantastic opportunity to educate yourself as well as your teens in a Biblical Worldview. Carol Barnier has been a very popular keynote speaker at prior CHOIS Conventions. She has written two new books since the last time that she was here as well as having developed six new workshops for us. Carol is one of those speakers who makes you laugh and cry. Maybe even at the same time. We know that she will surely be a blessing. Be sure to check out the rest of our amazing speaker lineup and if you want to read a full description of convention workshops visit our website at http www.chois. org convention workshops workshop-descriptions-in-detail . On-line registration is open and of course you are always welcome to copy the registration form from the magazine and mail it in as well. Have a wonderful spring.I can t wait to see everyone at the convention again this year ................................. LIKE US A faithful community where we share our days with you. CHOIS FOLLOW US Get on-the-go homeschool updates and see what we are up to. CHOIS PIN US Check out our boards on the things many homeschool moms love. CHOIS WAYS YOU CAN HELP Spread the word about CHOIS to family and friends. Like us on Facebook and encourage your friends to Like us too. Collect Box Tops for Education for CHOIS. Donate to the CHOIS Silent Auction. Join us in our effort to connect the whole state. Check out the website for volunteer needs. Pray for the CHOIS Board of Directors and volunteers we really need it Linda Patchin Linda Patchin edItOr Bloomingly Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 3 Contents CHOIS CONNECION Spring 2014 ....... HOW DID YOU WIND UP HERE Learning and information is exciting. My kids have absorbed an unintended lesson learning is an adventure. 6 ....... 2014 CHOIS CONVENTION In this issue you will find information about the 2014 A Bountiful Harvest Convention and a mail-in registration form. You are welcome to register online at and visit our website for updated information. ....... Do your best and then wait upon the Lord to do the rest. You may never hear your praises shouted from the rooftop but you will likely see acceptance in time. CONVINCING CRITICS 8 12 ....... IN EVERY ISSUE Resource Review . . . . . . . . . 18 Outwards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Discovering Idaho . . . . . . . . 26 Advise from a Geek . . . . . . . 28 Perhaps instead of asking What Would Jesus Do we should be asking WWJD -- What Would Jesus Drive WWJD 10 ....... YOU CAN BE YOUR CHILD S READING SPECIALIST 22 While there can be various reasons for reading difficulties you can rest assured that reading problems can be handled in the home school setting very successfully. 4 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 PUBLISHER CHOIS EDITOR Linda Patchin MAGAZINE LAYOUT AND DESIGN Diana Childress STUDENT PHOTOGRAPHERS Kylyn Maschek Laura Nelson Copyright 2014 by Christian Homeschoolers Of Idaho State. CHOIS Connection is published quarterly by Christian Homeschoolers of Idaho State. 2014 CHOIS Connection. All rights reserved. No material may be reproduced in any form without the express written permission of the publisher. CHOIS is solely responsible for its content. DISCLAIMER The articles contained in this publication have been prepared for and are intended to provide information that may be useful to Idaho home educators. The reader must evaluate this information in light of the unique circumstances of any particular situation and must determine independently the applicability of this information thereto. COLUMNISTS The views of guest columnists do not necessarily reflect the views of CHOIS. .......... SUBSCRIPTION Subscribe by mail (see page 29) or online at http chois-connection subscribe ADDRESS PO Box 45062 Boise Idaho 83711. Phone (208) 424-6685 WEBSITE ADVERTISING Rates are available upon request by email at advertising or by calling (208) 424-6685. CHOIS reserves the right to refuse without explanation any advertisement it deems unsuitable. Moving Please send your new address to info so that you can stay Connected Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 5 feature article Carol my friend quizzically began what are you and your kids painting on the wall of your garage My children and I were throwing large orange brush strokes over the white drywall. This is our recreation of the Aurora Borealis in Alaska I gushed. Wow. That s. . .big. Are you guys doing a unit study on Alaska No. Actually we re in a study on Musicians from the Baroque period. Then why the wall Because the sea monkeys aren t done breeding yet. Come again Over in the corner. Our sea monkey population has to peak and wane before we can throw them out. That s why we ve started building a trebuchet in the back yard. Um. . . and what does all this have to do with Baroque musicians Well I began with enthusiasm We started off with Vivaldi who taught music in an orphanage which someone said was right next to a bakery which took us to a quick study on yeast which we decided look remarkably like sea monkeys which. . . Stop right there. My friend s face seemed concerned. I m already exhausted. You re not helping. I m gonna go take a nap. Alrighty then We ll see ya tonight at our octopus How Did questions when they arise when the child has an expressed interest when it s tied to something that is meaningful to them their retention of the final answer is greater. You can wait for two more years when the question appropriately fits into your lesson plans. But by then your student may no longer have an interest in what the pyramids are made of. They ll learn the answer long enough to fill out a test but the spark of interest that made it intensely fascinating is now gone. dissection his is how about myself. learning sometimes I worried that this seems to go in our house. was going to damage my I may be exaggerating just a bit in the children s education--that there above dialogue but not by much. would be huge gaps in their package We do sometimes head down some of learning. But over the seventeen rather interesting and unintended or so years I ve been doing this I ve trails. But I ve grown so fond of it that found good reasons to relax. In fact I ve not only learned to embrace it I ve even found there have been I m even developing it into a whole some benefits to this method of study. new curriculum method. It s called Rabbit Trail Education. earning and information is exciting. My kids have absorbed study of one thing brings up an an unintended lesson learning is an interesting question which we adventure. This method has a sort track down which might lead to of Indiana Jones feel to it. We re another question which we track exploring mining truths and facts down. (Rinse. Repeat.) And before from the dull dry ground retrieving you know it a study on Gladys a sparkling gem of interest. Anything Alyward s missionary work in China that piques their curiosity is information has us out in the local woods scouting ripe for the plucking. Lessons are not and classifying mushrooms. feel the rote or drill or drudgery when they are moist earth propelled by a question that your kids want to know. et s start with a confession. I have a mind that loves distractions. There. t sticks better when it s relevant. I admit it. I delight in finding a new You might have a child who asks question that begs for an explanation. what type of stone the pyramids were I love tracking down answers to made from. You might even say to questions that just pop up in the them That s a great question but course of a typical study. Following a we won t be looking at Ancient Egypt prearranged lesson plan to the letter till you re in fifth grade. So let s get with no deviations is almost painful for back to Daniel Boone. Okay. That s me. I used to despair at this truth not unreasonable. But if you answer T A L I L I t s active not passive. Much learning comes in a rather passive package read this fill in the blanks take a test. This IS a method for learning. Don t get me wrong. Many curriculum packages use this method and the students do indeed learn. But it is passive learning. Information is handed to them prepackaged ready for consumption. It is a very different experience to have a question with no answer. It requires an active approach to learning and information. This not only makes learning more interesting but it prepares kids for exactly the kind of approach and discipline needed by scientists researchers and analysts of any sort. 6 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 You Wind Up Here By Carol Barnier I t ties the world together. You might think that this Rabbit Trail approach would lead to a very disjointed view of the world of information. But I have found it to be exactly the opposite. At its core this method is all about connections. The very reason that a question comes up in the mind of a child is because of something else that connected to it. It doesn t take very long to start seeing connections everywhere. Things which seem to have no relation whatsoever in fact if you look are tied somehow to everything else. This is truer in the study of history perhaps than in any other subject. I don t know about you but when I left school even college I couldn t tell you if Cleopatra was a contemporary of Shakespeare or if the Crusades happened before or after the fall of the Roman Empire. It was all a blur of memorized dates without connections. The Rabbit Trail approach over time actually pulls more things together recognizing the touch points that each person place or event has with other things. workbook this method requires people to get up get moving and get going. It often requires Mom and Dad to lead the way finding resources with answers. In other words learning is a group activity. Your children could read about longitude and latitude from a textbook. Or they could learn about coordinates from the family activity of geocaching. Even if it s simply something best answered by a trip to the internet you still tend to see Mom typing on the keyboard with all her children gathered round excitedly watching as the answer unfolds. For me this has brought about one of the best gifts in the world of homeschooling. I finally get to have the great education that I wish I d gotten in childhood. are delighted by new discoveries who love the energy that accompanies a child s desire to know more who enjoy learning right alongside their kids. If you re a mom who would just love to follow the delight of the moment I want to assure you that it s all good. This is not a mistake. God can use the delight-driven learning method that comes naturally to you as well as the more structured traditional model. Y I I t s a family activity. This is perhaps my favorite of the benefits. Unlike many learning moments which have children sitting off by themselves reading something or filling in a know this method is not for everyone. Some mothers would soon be overcome with the uncertainty and angst. Such academic flitting about would be almost frightening. If you re happier with a clear sequenced plan that is predictable and sure there s nothing wrong with that. In fact many teachers successfully teach this way and many students successfully learn. You guys already know you re fine. But the moms who need this message are the ones who are more like me who ou are now free to pursue learning that doesn t take a linear path that meanders that finds joy in the unexpected. There are so many benefits to such learning that you can rest in the knowledge that you are still serving your kids well. You may have to check your lesson plan every now and then to make sure all the boxes have check marks in them by the end of the year. But don t hesitate to go with the curiosity driven lesson. The pay-off will be a school that zings with possibilities and kids who will have a lifelong love of learning new things. Carol Barnier will be a CHOIS Keynote speaker this June. Many of the ideas in this article appear in her newest book The Big WHAT NOW Book of Learning Styles. Join Carol s free online coaching community for parents with highly distractible kids at or check out Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 7 Convincing Critics SPOUSES chois tidbits By Linda Patchin When you announced that you would be homeschooling your children did the room suddenly grow quiet Did your family object openly or were they more subtle Count yourself among the privileged few if your announcement was met with eager joy. Opposition comes in many forms and few homeschoolers escape its negative influence. Thankfully critics can often be convinced. All it takes is patience a plan and plenty of hard work. Of course the most important relationship in your home is the one between you and your spouse. Without a spouse s approval and support homeschooling efforts rarely flourish. It is wise to begin the conversation early and in a non-threatening manner. Introduce him to homeschool families. Become knowledgeable about home education so that you can share facts with your spouse. Visit the website of the National Home Education Research Institute. This website contains research that you can print out and study. Men relate well to statistical evidence. Provide your spouse with information pray for God s leading and then share from your heart about why you believe that God is calling you to homeschool. My husband was uncertain about home education. He watched our early preschool efforts and then cautiously gave the green light for Kindergarten at home. Once our oldest child had mastered reading he ran out of objections. Many homeschoolers begin with a one year at a time commitment. shy about sharing her opinion and this was no exception. With steam rising and eyes ablaze she assured us that we were going to ruin our children. I was speechless but my Champion began to share from his own heart and conviction. I wish I could say that this one heated conversation with the in-laws ended the discussion but it was only the beginning. Your parents will need time to accept your education choice. While you are waiting for that day here are a few things you can do to help them gain understanding. As soon as your children begin to read encourage them to read aloud to their grandparents. Who could resist the opportunity to snuggle close while a child reads to them This subtle progress report will speak volumes. When our parents get together with friends they enjoy sharing their grandchildren s accomplishments. Traditional schools provide many opportunities for a child to shine. Some grandparents feel that homeschooling will rob them of material to share. Homeschool parent it is your job to provide bragging rights for the grandparents I know what you are thinking. It seems prideful to share your success stories but this is an obstacle you must overcome. In fact by sharing we are really giving our parents reassurance. They will be wondering how things are going but they will probably be afraid to ask. So tell them My husband and I broke the news to our family that we were planning to homeschool our children. We received diverse reactions. My mom s response was subtle a lukewarm wait-and-see. My mother-in-law exploded. She was never PARENTS 8 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Conversely if you have some not-sosuccessful stories be selective in sharing them. Some listeners will consider this admission a license to discourage you from homeschooling. Others will listen with sympathy and then encourage you to get back in the game. It is vital to know the difference. I discovered the Mother Lode of Good Will by accident one day. When my son began to study World War II I encouraged him to interview his grandpa who had served in the war. Grandpa began sharing his stories to an eager listener. Pretty soon dusty medals were coming out of the drawer as we declared Grandpa the resident expert on all things military.Grandpa became invested in our homeschool Sometimes people assume too much. Often friends who do not homeschool feel that they are being judged by those of us who do even if we are silent on the subject. Their assumption can place obstacles in the path of friendship and family unity. We should examine our own hearts first. We have selected home education after much study and prayer. Most of us will not be dissuaded by the arguments of others. We should give the benefit of the doubt that parents who choose other education methods for their children have also prayerfully done their homework. We do not need to sell them on the idea of homeschooling. If God is calling them to walk this path He will gently lead them toward it just as He did us. While there is statistical evidence that points resoundingly to the efficacy of home education it is not necessarily the best method for everyone. God leads us according to His purpose for each family and each family is unique. Much like God s calling on specific families to enter the mission field while commanding all believers to share their faith God calls some parents to homeschool their children while He commands all to train up their child in the way that they should go. We could argue that homeschooling is the best way to train up a child but it is certainly EXTENDED FAMILY & FRIENDS not the only way. When God is calling a parent to consider home education He does so by opening their hearts. They may begin to make comparisons about education methods and outcome based upon observation. This is a good time to remain silent and allow the Holy Spirit to continue working while answering questions when they are asked. Some outsiders will never be won over. They have made a conscious decision to harden their hearts. Accept this defeat gracefully. Regardless of their claims we can have assurance that we are fulfilling God s calling upon our lives. Our feet are on the path that He has lain. What others believe and say does not matter inside of our home If you have been blessed with extended family and friends who were immediately accepting of your decision to homeschool REJOICE If not understand that it takes time to turn the dissenters in your life to supporters. They need to see that you are serious about what you are doing. That you are finding success. That your children are socially adept. That you have joy in the journey. Pray Do your work heartily as unto the Lord. Share your success stories. Involve others. Linda Patchin and her husband Paul have completed their homeschool journey. Eventually they won the acceptance of their parents and Grandpa became their most ardent (and vocal) fan. Everyone is an expert at something. Find out what their something is and then unleash their expertise upon your homeschool. Critics will enjoy sharing their treasure trove of knowledge with a child that they love. They may even catch a spark of how rewarding it can be to teach a child. Before long they will be bringing you new ideas and tools. And let us not grow weary while doing good for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6 9 Do your best and then WAIT UPON THE LORD to do the rest. You may never hear your praises shouted from the rooftop but you will likely see acceptance in time. - Linda Patchin Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 9 feature article WWJD By Bill Jack WWJD No WWJD does not stand for What Would Jesus Do That is like so 90 s. No wonder the culture accuses homeschoolers of being so behind the times living in their bunkers avoiding the real issues of the day. Why is there such opposition to the government instigating laws requiring a healthier environment Climate change is too large an issue for anyone individual one community or even one state to handle. Only the government has the power authority resources and ability to solve such an enormous problem. Traditionally there are four spheres of authority the family the church the state and I would add the employer employee relationship. Each has limited authority however. Come on. Get real. Issues like climate change are going to impact your children s future. Should we Christians not address these issues Has not the Creator given man the responsibility of being a steward of this planet The planet is in crisis--climate change overpopulation pollution killing endangered species killing the rain forest. People have become a cancer on Mother Earth and you homeschoolers are merely adding to the problem. Quite frankly homeschoolers seem to be living in denial. Perhaps instead of asking What Would Jesus Do we should be asking WWJD --- What Would Jesus Drive It is time to go Green and homeschoolers can set the example. After all homeschoolers live simply and economically. They knit their own clothes can their own beets have tight-knit communities and march to a different beat. Homeschoolers are already counter culture so going Green and caring for God s creation should come naturally. EASY NOW DON T GO CRAZY DON T GET UPSET I m just trying to get your attention. Much of what you just read is not some fringe ranting of an environmentalist wacko. Rather these are arguments that are being presented not just in the culture but also from pulpits and in the pews. Radical environmentalism is invading the culture and the church. How are Christians to respond Christian homeschoolers should be leading the debate on the environment not because we are refugees from the 60 s but because we have a biblical worldview. A biblical worldview dictates the role of family church and state. A biblical worldview establishes the jurisdiction of each the limited area to which each has the authority to speak. For example I as father have authority in my household. I can and should discipline my children when they are rebellious but I cannot boil and eat my children. Who has the authority to step in at that point-- besides my wife The answer obviously is the state because I as father have limited authority. The state has the authority to tell me to pay my taxes and obey speed limits but the state cannot come into my home and remove my children because the state doesn t like the length of their hair. The state has limited authority. The church has authority to tell me that I am in gross immorality and that I should repent. The church might even exercise discipline to the point of kicking me out of fellowship if I do not turn from my sin. (Matthew 18 I Cor. 5) However the church cannot demand that I turn over my entire paycheck to the building fund. The church too has limited authority. 10 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 My boss has the authority to tell me Go clean the toilets. They are dirty. However my boss cannot demand Hey we are out of change. I want you to go down to the bank---and rob it. He may say it but I don t have to obey because my employer has limited authority. Since Christian home school families allow the Bible to dictate the jurisdiction of each of these spheres of authority The biblical response is No The role of government is clearly outlined in Romans 13. Government is a minister of God for good. It has one purpose to further good and avenge evil. In short government s job is to administer justice. Christians should be calling for limited government intrusion on individual liberties i.e. property rights family planning and the use of individual resources. course but the answer is not one the culture wants to hear or necessarily will accept but Christians are obligated to proclaim it gracefully and boldly. The Christian and the body of believers the Church need to remind the culture of the truth of God s Word The Lord has a quarrel with the people living in the land because nobody in the land is faithful and kind or knows God...That is why the country By Bil l Jac k then homeschoolers should be addressing the issues facing our culture such as environmental concerns from the perspective of jurisdiction. Is it the role of the government to address environmental issues Should Christians call upon government to do so If not then who should address these concerns Perhaps we should recall the early debate and struggle home school pioneers faced with governments across the country who wanted to intrude into the jurisdiction of the family in the area of education as an illustration. Home school pioneers argued successfully that government s role is limited. That limit is defined by Scripture and reinforced by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution to the administration of justice. Government has an interest in having an educated citizenry and therefore should encourage education but government should not dictate the curriculum or means of education. Education is within the jurisdiction of the family not the state. Likewise when it comes to issues such as the environment the same principle applies. Before the culture gives over to government the authority to address environmental issues Christian homeschoolers have the credibility and obligation to raise the question Is this the role of government In recent days government has overreached its jurisdictional boundaries. Government wants to be your PrOvIder. Government wants to be your buSIneSS Partner. Government wants to be your mOral COmPaSS. Government wants to be your Safety net. Government wants to be your daddy. Christians especially those who home school should remind the culture and other Christians who sit in the pew of government s limitations and God s unlimited power and resources. God wants us to recognize That all good things come from the Father That we are to be about His business That we are to honor His ways and think His thoughts That we are to rely on Him for all our needs. However do Christians really have an answer to the environmental crisis Of dries up and everything in it languishes the animals in the fields and the birds in the sky. Even the fish in the sea are taken away --Hosea 4 1-3 It is within the jurisdiction of the church-- not the government--to ask and then answer WWJD --What Would Jesus Do Likewise it is within the jurisdiction of the individual Christian--not the government--to ask and then answer WWJD --What Would Jesus Drive WWJD Bill Jack is on the faculty of Worldview Academy a weeklong academic camp designed to train Christian students in worldviews evangelism and apologetics and in servant leadership skills. For more information about registration visit www. or call 800.241.1123. For those of you who are fretting about the question What WOULD Jesus Drive you can purchase Bill s DVD also entitled WWJD at Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 11 us not grow weary while doing good for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6 9 And let June 5th-7th 2014 HARVEST HOME EDUCATION 16th Annual A Bountiful STATE HOMESCHOOL CONVENTION Christian Homeschoolers of Idaho State At College Church of the Nazarene Nampa Idaho KEYNOTE SPEAKERS Bill Jack Worldview Academy Faculty Advisor Bill Jack is an educator with ten years experience in secular schools and 14 years with The Caleb Campaign a creationist youth ministry. Bill Jack is faculty advisor for Worldview Academy an academic leadership program that seeks to train Christian students to think and live in accord with a Biblical worldview so that they will serve Christ and lead the culture. Bill has appeared on numerous national radio and television programs and is the producer of several apologetic and worldview training DVDs. Bill s passion is to raise up a generation who have the vision to reach their culture with the gospel who have the valor to engage that culture with the truth and who rely on the virtue of the Word of God. Bill and his wife Tabby have three children and live in Colorado. Carol Barnier is a fresh fun and popular conference 12 12 speaker who continually strives to have the wit of Erma Bombeck crossed with the depth of C.S. Lewis but admits that most days she only achieves a solid Lucy Ricardo with a bit of Bob the Tomato. While her humor will have you leaning sideways her faith is solid stuff. Whether speaking about her first born son s 13 surgeries her family s many ADHD challenges or her own walk from being a God-denying atheist to the most grateful recipient of God s amazing grace this woman speaks from the heart. She knows why she knows what she knows. Carol homeschools her three children in New Hampshire and is the author of the books The BIG WHAT Now Book of Learning Styles Engaging Today s Prodigal How to Get Your Kid Off the Refrigerator and On to Learning and If I m Diapering a Watermelon then Where d I Leave the Baby Follow Carol s blog at CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Teen Program The CHOIS Teen Program welcomes Mr. Bill Jack of Worldview Academy to our convention this year. This program will include a series of workshops designed to address cultural issues in the light of Scripture. Sessions are filled with provocative discussions laughter and revealing insight into our culture. Worldview Academy is a non-denominational organization dedicated to helping Christians to think and to live in accord with a biblical worldview so that they will serve Christ and lead the culture. The Christianity & Culture Teen Program is a powerful event designed to help your teen Understand worldviews Get a Biblical perspective on current issues Understand the implications and consequences of ideas and the culture Strengthen faith with a consistent biblical worldview Be reassured that the Bible is true practical and applicable to every area of life Be motivated to translate knowledge into action Bill will be presenting a series of six workshops for teens and adults who wish to join them. He will also be presenting two Keynote Sessions which teens will be joining their parents to hear. Teens may also join their parents to hear our morning Keynote speaker Mrs. Carol Barnier. Space is limited to the first 125 teens to register for this exciting program. Participants must have at least one parent in attendance at the convention. For more information visit the www. website. Teen Schedule Program Lunch Break Program 10 45 am 11 45 am 11 45 am 1 30 pm 1 30 pm 4 00 pm Children Schedule Check-in Check-out for lunch Check-in Check-out 8 30 am 11 45 am 1 15 pm 6 00 pm Teens will join their parents for lunch and for both the morning and afternoon keynote sessions. Teen Program will meet in Franklin Hall. Parents are encouraged to attend with their teens if they would like. Saturday Presentation at conclusion of Keynote Session children will be with their parents for lunch. Children s Program Howdy Friends We invite all young uns to come on down to the Sonbrook Farm We ll explore the farmyard and the Appleseed Orchard as we learn about growing in Christ all the way from planting seeds to producing some mighty fine fruit. Y all will enjoy blue ribbon stories and crafts and our hoedown songs will keep you humming all the way home. Sign up now for some downto-earth farm fun and get ready to grow a rich harvest Convention attendees may enroll their children (ages 5-11) in the two-day CHOIS Children s Convention. Miss Abbie Kircher will manage our team of enthusiastic and well-trained teen volunteers. Children must have at least one parent in attendance at the convention. Early registration is required due to the limited number of openings. There will be no registration at the door for the Children s Program. Questions email them to us at info Visit for more information. Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 13 13 Featured SPEAKERS Barry Peters Esq. Barry is a member of the board of legal advisors for the Idaho Coalition of Home Educators and Christian Homeschoolers Of Idaho State. His regular legal updates inform Idaho homeschoolers of challenges to their right to home educate. He also writes a column ICHE Legislative News for each issue of the CHOIS Connection Magazine. Mr. Peters law practice in Eagle Idaho specializes in the areas of real estate estate planning and business law. He and his wife Res have successfully completed home educating their two daughters. Ken Frederick Ken has developed training curricula and taught outdoor survival and preparedness skills to numerous groups over the past 15 years. He brings a unique blend of theory practical insight and humor to his workshops. He and his wife live in Meridian Idaho and homeschool their four children. Ken Barnes Ken is a software developer and author of the regular CHOIS Connection article Ask a Geek. He and his wife Cindy have been homeschooling their four children since 2003. He has also taught math and computer science at the high school and collegiate levels and has been teaching math computer and astronomy classes in their local homeschool co-op for several years. Linda Patchin Linda is a founding and current board member of Christian Homeschoolers Of Idaho State. Her column CHOIS Tidbits appears in every issue of the CHOIS Connection Magazine. Married to Paul for thirty-three years she is the mother of four children. Her three oldest children are college graduates. Her youngest is currently a college student. Linda has over twenty-two years of home educating experience. Karen Craig Karen has taught in French Latin and English in private and homeschool settings. She was active in Delaware Home Educators Association until her family moved to Moscow Idaho in 1996. Charles and Karen homeschooled two sons. Karen has her formal training in English Literature and Composition and French and has a solid background in Latin. Karen is dedicated to excellence in home education. She is currently revising her Matin Latin textbooks. Karen believes one of the greatest gifts we can give our children is the ability to confidently express themselves through the spoken and written word. Cheryl Henbest Cheryl and her husband Jerry have been married for 21 years. She spent the past several years running a home-based business and working a full-time job as her husband completed his college degree and began his new career. The difficulties of those years strengthened both their family and their commitment to homeschooling. Cheryl continues to work occasionally at one of the area hospitals where the opportunities to share Christ s love are endless. She and her husband live in Meridian Idaho where they homeschool their four children. Patrick Nurre Patrick Nurre is from the beautiful state of Montana where as a young boy he spent many of his Saturdays rockhounding near the Big Horn River. This early interest led him to a lifelong study of the world of geology. His experience has included extensive field study in the Pacific Northwest the Midwest and Plains states the Southwestern U.S and most recently Israel. Patrick conducts classes and seminars in Seattle and speaks at numerous home school conventions on geology and our young earth. He leads a variety of geology field trips every year including one to Yellowstone Park where he helps families discover the Biblical geology of Yellowstone. Patrick s business Northwest Treasures is devoted to producing fine geology specimen kits and curricula from a young earth perspective. September 2012 saw the opening of his Geology Learning Center in Seattle. Patrick and his wife Vicki live in the Seattle Washington area. 14 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 14 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Copper Webb As an Idaho homeschool graduate Copper Webb grew up planning and preparing for the day when she would have her own children learning around the kitchen table. While she was waiting for that season of life Copper wrote the curriculum that CHOIS has been using for the past decade in their Children s Program. She endeavors to encourage and equip families who are establishing their own homeschools and when she can find rare uninterrupted time at the computer she blogs. Copper and her husband of ten years Mike live in Meridian with their four children Diane Kummer Diane and her husband Tom homeschooled their two children from kindergarten through 12th grade using a variety of teaching options. The Kummers daughter completed her master s degree in government and their son earned a bachelor of arts degree in communications public relations. After her children graduated from high school Diane helped to develop HSLDA s Homeschooling Thru High School program and website. As an HSLDA High School Consultant Diane regularly speaks throughout the country at homeschool conferences and one-day high school symposiums where she shares from her experiences and her imperfect (but real) homeschooling days Faith Berens Faith Berens lives in Stephens City VA with her husband Matthew daughter Hailey and son Hayden. Faith joined the HSLDA team of Special Needs Consultants in 2008 and homeschools her children as well as works as a private educational consultant and evaluator. Some of her passions include reading for pleasure singing traveling nature science leading Bible studies and teaching reading to struggling students. Faith holds a Master s degree in reading from Shenandoah University. She has over 15 years of teaching experience that includes serving as a classroom teacher in public and private Christian schools Reading Recovery teacher reading specialist NILD educational therapist home educator and tutor. Her areas of expertise are early childhood literacy reading assessment and the identification and remediation of reading difficulties and disabilities. Convention Workshops Friday June 6 Check-in 8 00-8 30 Children Check-in -8 30 Saturday June 8th Check-in 8 00-8 30 Children Check-in -8 30 Keynote -8 45-10 15 Barnier . . . 17 Years of Homeschooling and I Hardly Twitch at all Anymore Keynote 8 45-10 15 Barnier . . . Don t Miss the Gift in This Child Workshop I 10 45-11 45 Workshop I 10 45-11 45 Barnier . . . Homeschooling 101 Jack . . . The Ways of the Wizards vs. The Way of the Wiseman Kummer . . . Building on a Sure Foundation Staying the Course Through High School Nurre . . . Why You Need to Teach Geology Again and Again.. and How Berens . . . You Can Home School your Struggling Learner Craig . . . Latin for Little Learners Barnier . . . A Prodigal Speaks Out Jack . . . Fear vs. Faith Making Christianity the FAD for the Next Generation Kummer . . . Important Pit Stops During High School Nurre . . . The Geology of Idaho from a Biblical Perspective Berens . . . Laying a Foundation for Reading Comprehension in the Preschool Years Craig . . . Surviving Without Slang Workshop II -1 30-2 30 Workshop II 1 30-2 30 Barnier . . . Teaching Your Child to Read...Made Easy Jack . . . Simple Tools for Brain Surgery Kummer . . . Developing a Plan for High School Nurre . . . Dinosaurs The Ark and the Bible Berens . . . Dyslexia Demystified--Definitions and Hope for Homeschoolers Patchin . . . Homeschooling The Great Adventure Barnier . . . Help I Fell Off my Lesson Plan Jack . . . Counterfeit Reality Kummer . . . Scoop on Tests for Teens Peters . . . Race to the Bottom Tyranny of the Common Core Berens . . . Before PHONICS--Phonemic Awareness--The Missing Ingredient in Reading Instruction Patchin . . . Choosing Curriculum and Teaching Methods Workshop III -3 00-4 00 Workshop III 3 00-4 00 Barnier . . . What are you THINKING --Learning Styles and Beyond Jack . . . Creation Evolution--What s the Big Deal Kummer . . . High School Transcript and Record Keeping Clinic Webb . . . The Little Years Preschool and Kindergarten Berens . . . Teaching Struggling Learners at Home Nuts and Bolts for Success Henbest . . . Balancing the Joys and Trials of Working While Homeschooling Barnier . . . Get Kids INTO Missions--all without EVER Leaving Home Jack . . . Which Bias is the Best Bias to be Biased By Kummer . . . You Can Homeschool High School...If You Can Make it Through Tomorrow Frederick . . . Outdoor Education for Homeschool Families Berens . . . Reading Difficulties Remediation Strategies and Techniques Barnes . . . Advice From a Geek Keynote 4 30-6 00 Keynote 4 30-6 00 Jack . . . Torn Between Two Worldviews Jack . . . Nice CFC s Destroy Christian Ozone Layer Full Workshop descriptions may be found at Children s Presentation -6 00 Children and Teen Programs will both release students to their parents during the lunch break from 11 45-1 30 each day. Please plan accordingly. Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 15 15 RegistRation Early Registration is open online at from March 1 through June 1 2014. You may also register through the mail by sending in the registration form from the next page paying by check. The deadline for registering through the mail is May 25 2014. Please understand that there is a size restriction on the children s and teen s programs and the best way to ensure enrollment is to register online early. Once these programs are full we will not be able to accept any more child or teen registrations either online or through the mail. Be advised that if you are registering through the mail you should check online first to be certain that space is still available for children and teens. eaRly RegistRation Fees regISter early tO Save 10 The adult admission fee is for an individual with spouse attending for free. Adult 50.00 Child (5-11) 25.00 Teen (12-18) 25.00 Non-Homeschooling Grandparent FREE Convention sChedule Registration Open Keynote Session Exhibit Hall Open Workshops Lunch Break Vendor Workshops Workshops Workshops Keynote Session 8 00 am 6 00 pm 8 45 am 10 15 am 10 00 am 5 00 pm 10 45 am 11 45 am 11 45 am 1 30 pm 12 45 pm 1 15 pm 1 30 pm 2 30 pm 3 00 pm 4 00 pm 4 30 pm 6 00 pm on-site RegistRation After June 1 registration will only be accepted at the door. The at-the door admission fee for an individual or married couple is 60.00. It is not possible to register a child at the door. regIStratIOn IS nOn-refundable and nOn-tranSferable. The incredible CHOIS Used Curriculum Sale will be held on Thursday June 5 2014 from 10 00 am to 1pm in the gymnasium of the College Church of the Nazarene. Admission is FREE If you would like to participate as a seller please download an application at the website. Seller space is limited so get your application in quick Used Curriculum Sale Advertising Advertising in CHOIS s Convention Program is a great way to let homeschooling families know about your business product or service. The convention program is given to every family in attendance. If you would like more information about advertising in either the Convention Program or the CHOIS Connection Magazine please email us at advertising Pastors CHOIS recognizes the value of pastoral support for homeschooling families. Pastors and their spouses are invited to attend the convention for free. If you are a pastor please send a request for free admission on church letterhead along with your registration form. We regret that we cannot offer scholarships to children and teens. Volunteers Volunteers are an integral part of the success of the annual Idaho Home Education Convention and Curriculum Fair hosted by CHOIS. Our convention is run entirely by volunteers from the convention director to the registration staff. Our volunteer workers help keep costs to a minimum while continuing to provide an excellent conference. We are looking for responsible adults to volunteer in a variety of positions at our convention including booth hosting workshop hosts registration silent auction and hospitality volunteers. If you would like to be a part of our team please email us at info Exhibit Hall The convention Is a great place to purchase your homeschool curricula and supplies. Many vendors will be displaying the newest and best materials available to home educators. An Exhibit Hall Only pass is available at the door for free. This pass is valid on Saturday only from 10 00am through 5 00 pm. See the CHOIS website at for a complete list of vendors. Businesses that sell products or services designed to meet the needs of homeschooling families are invited to apply for exhibit space during the 2014 CHOIS Convention. If you would like to receive an exhibitor packet to vend at the convention please email your request to info Hotel Accommodations The following establishment has offered reduced rates for those attending our event. To receive the reduced rate you must ask for the CHOIS Convention block and make reservations prior to May 16 2012. Hampton Inn & Suites Nampa at the Idaho Center 5750 East Franklin Rd. Nampa ID 83687 1-208-442-0036 Silent Auction CHOIS will host a silent auction with proceeds going to underwrite the printing and postage expenses of the CHOIS Connection Magazine. Many wonderful items and services have been donated and will be awarded to the highest bidder. For more information or to donate an item please email info 16 16 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Additional Children We love children and want to include them whenever possible. This conference is geared for parent teacher enrichment and learning so we encourage you to make childcare arrangements for your children. We recognize that this is not always possible. We ask that the following considerations be observed in order to make the convention a pleasant experience for all of our attendees. Please remove young children from the room if they become noisy or distracting. There is a nursing mother s lounge in the Women s restroom in the Atrium area. Children are welcome to attend all keynote sessions and workshops in the Sanctuary and Franklin Hall. Children are welcome in smaller workshop rooms only after the workshop has begun and if there are still empty seats. Our workshops are for the benefit of parents and it would be a real shame for a child to be taking the seat of an adult who has paid to hear the speaker. Please be mindful of the needs of others. Keynote sessions and most convention workshops will be reproduced for purchase. CD s may be purchased at the convention or afterwards online. No personal audio or videotaping is permitted. There will be a breakfast lunch and snack provider at the convention and during the used curriculum sale. Food may be purchased from one of the many businesses located nearby or sack lunches may be brought from home. We understand the importance of grandparents in the homeschooling process. NON-HOMESCHOOLING GRANDPARENTS are always welcome to attend for free if they attend with their adult children who have paid the registration fee. Grandparents who are still homeschooling their own children must register separately and pay the admission fee. Grandparents Parents of Preschoolers Parents of Preschoolers FREE Admission Policy is to reach families before their children are of school age as a positive way to expand and share the vision of home education. To help reach parents of preschoolers we are offering free admission. This is a great way to invite young families to come to the convention to learn more about parent-led family-funded relationship-based home education. If you know someone who meets the following criteria please tell them about this opportunity. To participate Their oldest child must be under five years of age. They must be first time attendees to the CHOIS Convention. They must register for the convention prior to May 25 2014. CHOIS is able to provide a very limited number of scholarships. Please call (208) 424-6685 or email info chois. org for more information. Taping Scholarships Food pre-registration by mail May 25 2014 online June 1 3014 Please complete this form and mail with payment to CHOIS Home School Convention P.O. Box 45062 Boise ID 83711-5062 For your convenience you can register online at Please check appropriate fees early deadline Register early to save 10 at-door rIndividual . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 rSpouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FREE . . . . . . . . rTeens w parents (12-18) . . . . . . . . . 25 . . . per teen . . . . 30 Please Print rChildren (5-11) all children must be preregistered 25 per child no registration at the door Parents _____________________________________ rGrandparents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .FREE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . rParents whose oldest child is under 5 and who have never Teens Attending ______________________________ attended the convention before . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FREE . . . . . . . . Children Attending (Including age) _______________ rSubscription to CHOIS Connection (renewal & new) . . . . 10 ___________________________________________ Total . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . __________ Address ____________________________________ City State Zip _______________________________ Payment Please make checks payable to CHOIS Phone ( ) _________________________________ Email ______________________________________ money and time at the check-in counter. If you would like confirmation I _____________________ would like to serve as a volunteer 2 3 4 5 hours Early registration enables CHOIS to plan efficiently and save you that we have received your registration please include a self-addressed stamped envelope with your registration. Otherwise your cancelled check is your confirmation. Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 17 17 W hen I began to research homeschooling nineteen years ago there were relatively few books on the topic in our little county library. Even with this limitation I gobbled up all that I could on the topic -- interviewing homeschooling families whom I d heard of and those that I was in close interaction with as well as reading every book I could find on the subject. Those first books became close friends in my life and as I ve added more to my home library I can honestly say that those authors have become mentors for me as I ve journeyed this path called homeschooling. I believe that as homeschooling parents we need to be keeping our hearts and minds active constantly learning and growing. It is never too late to learn more on the topic of home education. Apply what you learn and practice eagerly what you haven t already mastered. I encourage you to research for yourselves and become friends with perhaps a few of the books below as well as those you might already be acquainted with in your home library. We all need encouragement inspiration and perhaps a good ol kick in the pants now and then. The following resources will provide just that and more. Homeschooling Resources for the Home Educator resource review A Veteran s Perspective The Heart of Home Schooling by Christopher Klicka The late Chris Klicka was a champion for home education serving with Home School Legal Defense Association to bring us the freedoms and privileges to homeschool which we so easily take advantage of today. Your reading on the topic of homeschooling would be incomplete without having read one of his books this being my favorite. The subtitle for the book is Teaching and Living What Really Matters and this concept is adhered to throughout the text. With topics such as balancing homeschooling with other life responsibilities teaching a Biblical worldview understanding suffering in the midst of homeschooling and a challenge to homeschool fathers Chris writing is both straightforward and evangelistic. He is passionate in his desire to inspire others to make the very most out of home education -- drawing our children to Christ and equipping them to be world changers. As a homeschool father of seven children he shares from his own experience putting a particularly unique emphasis on the role of fathers in the homeschooling journey. This book offers Biblical wisdom on discipling our children within the joys of home life where Christ is Lord. His writing is incredibly enriching and would be an ideal book to read alongside your spouse. This book singlehandedly has had the greatest impact on our family s homeschool. Sally and Clay do an amazing job of providing a handbook on Christian home education. Distinctively God honoring Educating the Wholehearted Child focuses first on the home where nurturing and discipleship are of highest priority. Chapters within cover topics such as creating a learning environment shaping your child s heart for God various study methods based on the individual learning styles of your children and the basics of living and creating a warm and inviting home in the midst of learning. With sidebars on each page chock full of Scripture references and practical applications each chapter is literally a gem filled with Biblical truth alongside real-life stories of how the authors have put into practice what they teach. I cannot recommend this book enough. Please consider putting it on your wish list borrowing it from a friend and or rereading it if it already resides on your shelves. You will be inspired beyond measure by the Clarkson s words and heart-felt message. BY KRISTI KRONZ M.A. 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum by Cathy Duffy As a curriculum junkie I couldn t help but put in a plug for this excellently written resource which systematically provides an extremely Well-written review of several of the best homeschooling curriculum options. Cathy begins with an excellent synopsis of learning and teaching styles complete with questions for you to answer which will help you to determine your family s individual philosophy of education. Answering the all-important question of who should learn what when -- Cathy offers her reasoning and guidelines for the 100 curriculum choices that she recommends as well as shares from her experience and understanding as both a homeschooling mother and an expert and widely-sought out curriculum consultant. All academic areas are covered throughout this easy-to-read book from the three R s to electives and everything in between. In addition she spends one chapter reviewing unit study and all-in-one programs providing the reader with a wide scope of understanding for a variety of home education choices. Educating the Wholehearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson 18 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Things We Wish We d Known compiled and edited by Bill and Diana Waring. It may seem a bit strange but this one publication is the homeschooling resource I have read the most frequently over the past nineteen years While I wouldn t say that it necessarily offers tremendous learning of new skills or inspires you to new heights of educational prowess it does offer something that not every book can do -sympathy This compilation of short articles written by real-life veteran homeschooling families is just what you might need to read when you re feeling frustrated alone or are perhaps needing a pat on the back for your unnoticed efforts (we all do occasionally you know ). Consider it free advice and encouragement on a variety of topics from the basics of homeschooling to the blessings which are inherently a part of this daily choice. Published in 1999 this book is an oldie but goldie which still finds a place on my bedside table every couple of years. Homeschooling at the Speed of Life by Marilyn Rockett If you re looking for a book which equips you with the knowledge of how to balance your home school and family and does it in an easy-toread highly practical way (and has large font lots of space to take notes and only 160 pages of text ) this is the book for you Marilyn does what can be so hard to do -- offering advice on managing the logistics of home and school organization in a gracious non-accusatory way. With a text that is distinctly Biblical several appendix options with helpful lists and chapters with titles such as Real Life Home Management Record-keeping Made Easy and Paper by the Pile you can see why this book would be an excellent and readily-used resource in all of our homes. Practical to the core and filled with great suggestions for everyday organization while living and learning alongside our children Homeschooling at the Speed of Life is a musthave in every home educator s library. Used Curriculum Sale ADMISSION Thursday June 5 2014 10am - 1pm College Church of the Nazarene Gymnasium 504 E. Dewey Nampa Idaho CHOIS will be renting tables for 10 each to pre-registered sellers. Those who do not pre-register may pay 15 at the door if tables are available. The doors open for seller set up at 8 30 a.m. Sellers are responsible for displaying and selling their items and will collect their own fees. This format allows sellers an opportunity to adjust pricing make deals or even to trade products. There will not be a commission charged for items sold For more information about how to be a seller please visit the website at www. FREE With so many excellent resources for homeschooling families out there it was a challenge to limit it to just these few books. As you research for yourself please consider also reading and perhaps adding to your home library the following books on homeschooling Seven Tools for Cultivating Your Child s Potential by Zan Tyler The Basic Steps to Successful Homeschooling by Vicki Brady Homeschooling High School by Jeanne Gowen Dennis Reaping the Harvest The Bounty of Abundant Life Homeschooling by Diana Waring Homeschooling with a Meek and Quiet Spirit by Teri Maxwell Kristi Kronz is still passionate about homeschooling and loves learning all she can on the topic even after nineteen years of reading and research She resides in the Idaho countryside south of Nampa with her husband of 23 years her three children and menagerie of pets filling her 8 acre homestead. As the Lord has filled her cup to overflowing in this season of life she is needing to set down her writing pen and focus on finishing well and focusing whole-heartedly on her family and home at this time. She can be contacted personally via info HOnOrable mentIOnS Library Plaza Business Mall 3085 N. Cole Rd Boise ID 83704 (Corner of Cole Road and Ustick) Chess Art Music Chinese Spanish Latin Bachelor and Master Degree Quality Professional Instructors Year Round Pre-K to 12 programs Monday - Friday Sessions 9am-12pm 12pm-3pm 3pm-6pm 6pm-9pm Saturday Chess Tournaments chessanyone Academy 208-562-9785 19 Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn outwards outwords ation nIng bserv O IS lfenaSrOtS tHat SeeIng SerIeS O S aP H er tHIS COnSId IPle. ate tHIS PrInC IlluStr J ack London wrote a short story once about a prospector s search for gold. I think of a prospector as a grizzled man stooping in a stream with a gold pan but London s tale described a different approach to the craft. Instead of trusting to luck and merely panning the gravel in the creek the story s protagonist used rational observation to locate a pocket of gold. fter finding a tiny amount of placer gold on the banks of a creek the prospector dug a series of test holes on the hillside above the creek. He theorized that a pocket of gold was on the hillside not in the creek itself. Trace amounts of gold in the creek were not worth panning but they would point upstream to a larger deposit. He dug each hole down until he hit gravel then panned a sample of the gravel for loose gold. A 1 Y ears ago on a frosty winter morning I was driving to work. The road I traveled ran along a river and as I came around a corner a coyote crossed the road in front of me. The coyote had just climbed up the bank from the river and was headed for the brushy cover on the other side of the road. This coyote had a mallard duck in its mouth. 2 J oe Kastenholz a friend of mine who was a wildlife biologist and part-time trapper once mentioned to me that he had spotted a bee tree. This caught my attention so I asked him how he had happened to find such a tree. While doing a wildlife survey he had noticed scratch marks made by a bear trying to climb a dead cottonwood tree. The tree which had been killed in a forest fire several years before had lost its bark which made the bear s scratch marks easy to see. When my friend looked up in the tree he saw a prominent hole in the trunk--the work of a woodpecker or other cavity nester. Then he noted honeybees flying in and out of the hole. He put two and two together. A swarm of honeybees had taken up residence in the hollow section of the dead tree. The bear had smelled the honey in a bee nest and had attempted to climb the tree to raid the bee s honey supply. Joe was not only a good biologist he was very observant. T he prospector s approach relied on his observations (which were based on the amount of placer gold in each sample) to plot a map of sorts that pointed to the location of the pocket of loose gold in the creek. Eventually he located the lode. T L 20 ondon s story is a vivid--albeit fictional--example of the value of observation. Seeing in depth and detail is a terrific skill for backcountry recreation. If you take the time to train yourself to alertly observe your surroundings you will be amazed at what you will see. CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 hat sight taught me something about coyotes. It was no surprise that the coyote realized that ducks are prey. What was surprising was how that coyote obtained its meal. In the winter ducks will forage by paddling along the edges of rivers and lakes. The coyote had observed the habits of ducks. It had figured out that by concealing itself in a strategic spot and by patiently waiting passing ducks might just float by close enough to be ambushed. That coyote knew how to observe By Ken Frederic k or mountain-biking in country you have not seen before periodically look around and mentally note landmarks you see. Look at these landmarks more than once so you are seeing them from different angles. This will help you recognize these features if and when you make your way back along the same route. C 3 W hile camping along the Middle Fork of the Payette River a few years back my kids and I were wading along the river. The kids were exploring throwing rocks and having fun I was looking for the habitat of the Oncorhynchus mykiss the tasty rainbow trout. 4 I was driving in the sage brush of the Great Basin desert lands once. The sun had just set. I was intent on carefully navigating the narrow dirt road and avoiding scratching the side of my vehicle with brush when some movement to my left caught my eye. I happened to glance up at the right moment. In the waning light of the western sky a hawk was steadily beating its wings to gain altitude. The raptor was laboring to fly because it was carrying something. A large snake dangled from the hawk s talons--undoubtedly a good meal for the hawk. hildren need to be encouraged to learn the skill of observation. For instance the next time you head outdoors with your kids ask them to use observation to contemplate questions like these What shape does columnar basalt form in Which side of a mountain (north south east or west) has the thickest vegetation What is the most typical shape of beaver dams Which small animals do not hibernate in the winter (indicated by tracks in snow) What kinds of perches do hawks most often use Oftentimes observing a what will lead a child to ask why. He or she will want to explore further. For students who are interested in natural sciences Idaho is a terrific state for learning exploration and great family times. One of the key ingredients in exploration and learning is the skill of closely and carefully seeing what you are looking at. Ken Frederick presents workshops with educational insight practical knowledge and humor. He was a wildland firefighter for many years and has taught outdoor skills to groups ranging from middle and high school students to the Boy Scouts and the Civil Air Patrol. Ken is a graduate of Eastern Washington University and Denver Seminary. He is employed with the Bureau of Land Management. He and his wife Marylin live in Meridian Idaho and homeschool their four children. W hile wading I spotted the shell of the pearlshell a freshwater mussel (Margaritifera falcata). This shellfish is native to Idaho rivers and streams. Aha Where there are shells there are mussels--probably upstream. Sure enough by wading upstream I located a few of these mollusks. I didn t collect any that day but it was gratifying to find these shellfish. [Idaho has no restrictions on harvesting freshwater shellfish though mussels have become rare enough that conservationminded people should harvest them only out of necessity. If you do wish to consume them note the quality of water the mussels are living in prior to cooking and eating freshwater mussels. Bad water suggests bad mussels.] H L ad I merely kept my eyes on the dirt road I was driving I would have missed the treat of seeing God s system of predator and prey in action. ike locating placer gold sometimes we have to work to gain a deeper understanding of God s creative handiwork. Observation is the practice of focusing and intentionally seeing what is there to be seen and it is one key to learning more about the outdoors. G ood observation is not merely a learning skill. It can be a safety measure as well. If you are hiking driving Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 21 feature article Can I really teach my struggling child to read I feel so frustrated. I did fine with the others but this child is different. - Concerned homeschooling mom In the Struggling Learner department we often hear from parents who are overwhelmed because their child seems to be behind in reading and the curriculum is not working Many bright hard-working children struggle with reading for various reasons. Although some experts in the field of reading tell parents teaching reading is rocket science implying that it should be left to professionals we rely on God s Word and His Word commands parents to instruct their children diligently in the ways of the Lord and that includes reading His Word. We trust parents can help even the most struggling students and we are here to support you in that endeavor. As you seek to serve as your child s reading specialist at home here are some steps for success 1. Equip yourself with knowledge It is necessary to have some specialized knowledge about reading development and reading disabilities dysfunctions. Determine where your child is struggling in reading and detect the level or severity of his difficulty Choose carefully the curriculum materials and remediation strategies based on your child s specific needs. Reading is making meaning from printed symbols on a page and it is a highly complex problem-solving activity. In fact Dr. Sally Shaywitz a leading researcher in the field of dyslexia in addition to professor and director of the Yale Center for Learning and Attention states Reading is the most complex of human functions (Shaywitz 2003). Decoding or sounding out words is certainly the most basic step in reading. Indeed quick and automatic recognition of words is necessary for fluent reading and for comprehension. But reading also involves drawing on knowledge experience vocabulary as well as employing a variety of strategies to construct meaning. Efficient readers reread make and confirm predictions apply fix up strategies clarify use context clues and graphics as well as break words into smaller recognizable units for example in order to make meaning of unfamiliar text. Engaged readers interact with the text involving not only what the author has written but also bringing their own ideas to the writing. According to Jean Chall world-renowned psychologist reading expert and professor emeritus at Harvard University reading is a skill which is built upon through stages. All life-long learners climb this on-going stair step process of reading development. Keep in mind that this is a continuum of development and each person progresses at his her own rate so the ages grades that one progresses through these stages are stated in general. WHat IS readIng 5 StageS Of readIng Stage 0 Pre-reading At this stage there is an unsystematic accumulation of understandings about reading that are picked up in the pre-school and kindergarten years. At this stage beginning at birth up to kindergarten age by providing the child a languagerich conversation-filled home with story books playing with spoken words nursery rhymes and the rhythm of language the pre-requisite skills of phonemic awareness phonics vocabulary and comprehension are all being put into place. Stage 1 Initial Reading or Decoding Stage (grades 1-2 Ages 6-7) At this stage the student s main task is learning arbitrary letters and associating them with corresponding parts of spoken words. Learners also acquire knowledge about reading sight words and phonics skills. 2. 3. In this article we will equip you with background knowledge on reading development discuss the 5 Pillars of Reading Instruction and provide some informal assessments and check lists to assist in determining your child s stage of reading development as well as detect any areas of reading difficulty. So let us discuss some foundations of reading 22 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Reading Specialist develOPment Stage 2 Confirmation Fluency Automaticity Stage (grades 2-3 Ages 7-8) At this stage there is a consolidation of what was learned in Stage 1 and students begin to become more automatic and unglued from print. This stage requires much reading and reading many books with ease rereading familiar books for developmental reading to increase fluency is recommended. There is a gradual increase in functional and recreational reading at this level the common practice in reading instruction is to use a basal reading program and leveled readers. It is important at this level too to increase non-fiction and functional reading. You Can Be Your Child s By Faith Berens M.Ed. A rmed with a solid foundational understanding of the stages of reading development parents can best serve as their children s literacy specialists. As you observe your child climb each level you will be there to intervene should they get stuck in one stage as well as assist them in moving on to the next phase. Also by knowing these stages parents can document children s progress in their homeschool records narratives or summary reports. Simple check lists or charts can be created on which to graph each child s stage of reading development. tHe fOllOWIng WebSIteS Offer free SCreenIngS fOr readIng dIffICultIeS dySlexIa www.dynaread. com and Barton Reading http www. students_long. html screen Quick Word Recognition assessment http strugglinglearner CraftDocs Quick_ Word.asp Fluency Assessment and Chart http strugglinglearner CraftDocs Fluency_Assess.asp reSOurCeS tO HelP aSSeSS and teaCH readIng SkIllS develOPment Dr. William Eckenwiler and Kristen Eckenwiler www.TheStrugglingReader. com assessments and intervention materials designed for homeschooling parents Dianne Craft Tracey Tutor http parent positive all_reading milestones.html Reading Skills Pyramid Poster http On-line Phonemic Awareness assessments http gamesteasers brain-games-kids sounddiscrimination bear-wear play or http curriculum literacy video assessments kphonemic.pdf Scholastic Books Teaching Resources 3-Minute Reading Assessments by Timothy Rasinski and Nancy Padak and 35 Rubrics and Checklists to Assess Reading and Writing by Adele Fiderer Stage 3 Reading for Learning A First Step (Grades 4-8 Ages 9-13) At this stage readers bring their prior knowledge to the reading and also acquire facts and information from reading. It is simply not enough for struggling readers to be assigned reading or even be read aloud to and then asked comprehension questions. It should also be stated that phonics instruction cannot stand alone as a reading program either. So what should daily reading instruction and a good reading program look like According to the National Reading Panel (1993) any solid reading program or curriculum should address five core areas referred to as the five pillars Phonemic Awareness (pre-phonics skills phonological processing involves an awareness that words are made up of sounds and those sounds can be combined broken apart and manipulated) Decoding phonics Vocabulary (to include sight words) Fluency Comprehension Stage 4 Multiple Viewpoints Stage (High School Ages 14-18) At this stage reading instruction should also include reading and study skills and offer strategies for reading success such as deeper comprehension. Stage 5 Construction and Reconstruction Stage (College Adulthood Ages 18 and up) At the stage of adult literacy acquisition of skills needed and useful to the reader as well as the ability to apply those skills is stressed. Daily instruction for mildly or moderately struggling readers should include training Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 23 fIve PIllarS Of readIng InStruCtIOn in phonemic awareness skills as well as fluency practice such as timed repeated readings choral and or echo reading if needed. Each day all readers need time for independent easy reading (95%-100% accuracy) in addition to oral guided instructional level reading (94%-90% accuracy) to work on phonics sight words and vocabulary development. When looking for specialized homeschooling reading curriculum as well as planning for your child s reading instruction be sure these five core areas are addressed. Keep in mind that it may be necessary to use an eclectic approach compiling various resources in order to address the reading skills your child needs to develop the most. Students with severe struggles in reading and particularly students with dyslexia need a very structured and sequential explicit and multi-sensory program. The best type of intervention for students with dyslexia is a program that is OrtonGillingham based. Some of the most well known Orton-Gilingham based programs include the Barton System for Reading and Spelling Wilson Recipe for Reading and All About Reading and All About Spelling. To access lists of recommended reading curricula and materials a list of Intensive Phonics Intervention programs and sample reading lessons please go to http www. strugglinglearner sn_articles.asp To read Dianne Craft s e-newsletter on Understanding Reading Difficulties and Faith Berens article on Reading Comprehension be sure to visit http strugglinglearner sn_newsletters.asp Part 2 of this article on Reading provides a prescriptive guide for matching your child s specific reading problem with targeted teaching methods and curricula. You will also learn how to accurately determine what level of reading difficulties your child has whether Level 1-mild reading difficulties Level 2-moderate or Level 3-severe (often referred to as dyslexia). This article may be found in the HSLDA Court Report magazine Vol. XXVII No. 6 November December 2011 issue with the on-line version available at following website http courtreport V27N6 V27N609.asp While there can be various reasons for reading difficulties you can rest assured that reading problems can be handled in the home school setting very successfully. In fact the one-on-one tailored instruction of home can be the very best setting for a struggling reader We believe that those He calls He always equips We trust parents can teach their struggling readers and we will come along side not only to encourage you but also to equip you with the best methods materials and teaching strategies to match your child s unique learning style. Faith is one of the Struggling Learner experts at Home School Legal Defense Association. She will be a featured workshop speaker at the CHOIS Convention in June. Summary HOW BEAUTIFUL Floral desig n A floral design company for weddings and events Contact Emily about your upcoming wedding or event to develop your vision and put shape to your floral ideas. Emily Patchin DESIGNER 24 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 Emily 208.921.4593 Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 25 discovering Idaho Spin into Spring by Connie Seward T he Sheep Shed located at the eastern edge of Nampa Idaho is home to a flock of Merino and Rambouillet sheep raised by Duane and Cleo Gallinger. In 1989 after Duane retired as an animal nutritionist and Cleo as a nurse they began operating the Sheep Shed as a cottage industry. Duane s experience in professional sheep shearing began many years ago as a means to pay his college tuition. Twenty-five years ago he suggested that Cleo try her hand at spinning in order to utilize the wool from their Merino sheep. Since that time they have kept flocks of over 200 ewes along with 200 lambs. These days the flocks are smaller and usually consist of about 30 ewes and lambs as well as several alpacas. products are important as an agriculture commodity while showing how raw wool is processed into beautiful and functional finished products with the aid of a spinning wheel or felting process. Hands on learning is encouraged with opportunities for feeling unwashed wool full of lanolin as well as processed wool. Newborn lambs and young alpacas frolicking nearby are available for petting. In addition to the spring tours Cleo offers spinning lessons and 4-H coaching year round in her spinning studio. Beginners can expect to proficiently operate a spinning wheel after a one-time class of three hours. Cleo is passionate about teaching students as young as nine and as old as ninety plus. She also coaches 4-H participants preparing for competition and has helped a number of youth obtain state championship titles. Take time to browse the Gallinger s store full of sheep by-products. You will find raw wool for spinning or crafting hand dyed and spun wool Gaywool dyes woolen crafts as well as spinning wheels looms and weaving supplies. The handmade woolen crafts include Christmas tree ornaments and other household decorations a wide array of hats purses and rugs. Lamb meat can be purchased by the pound or reserved by the half or whole lamb cut to your specifications. Proceeds from the store are used to purchase hay for the sheep during the upcoming winter months. Each spring the Gallinger s graciously offer educational tours and sheep shearing demonstrations for individuals and school groups. In the course of a few weeks the Sheep Shed annually hosts over 3 000 guests. Tours lasting 45 minutes are conducted daily at 10 00am and 1 00pm. Duane treats visitors to a lively sheering demonstration along with information on the basic biology and nutrition requirements of sheep. Cleo relates how and why various sheep Cost Student 3.00 Adult Free with paying student April Only (or until the lambs are turned out to pasture) Call early to secure a reservation Groups of 50 are workable and smaller groups may be combined. Field Trip Information Contact Information Duane & Cleo Gallinger 208-466-4365 sheepshed 76 North Robinson Road Nampa Idaho 83687-8764 Connie Seward and husband Quentin homeschooled their children through high school in Boise Idaho. One of their favorite springtime discovery excursions was the Sheep Shed where they enjoyed petting the lambs and gathering inspirations for crafting. 26 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 online interactive publications WEBSITES Curriculum Connections A trip to the Sheep Shed can enhance your curriculum in numerous ways. Spring is a great time for a bit of out door hands-on education. z newslet ers R E I D ADVERTISING Logos graphic desig COLLATERAL SIGN AGE PRINTMEDIA MAGAZINES web design editorial design Art Connection Dyeing Felting Spinning Weaving Knitting Crocheting Tapestry Rag Rugs Needle Felting Punch Needle and more. __________ Specializing In Art Direction a graphic design firm Science Connection Agriculture Science Sheep Biology Anatomy Nutrition & Veterinary care __________ ADVERTISING Economic Connection Pro s and cons of a sheep cottage industry versus large-scale sheep ranching. __________ WEBSITES Website Design Logos Print Media Newsletters Advertising social Agriculture Connection Sheep Husbandry email sr phone 208.659.8408 Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 27 advice from a geek Gadgets ICHE BULLETIN BOARD April - May Candidate Statements Posted Vote May 20 Congressional state legislative state elected office candidate statements concerning home education are posted on the website. Study the positions of the candidates in your district and volunteer for a day to assist with the campaigns of those whom you support. Contact your County Clerk for your legislative district number which may have changed. Vote on May 20 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ____________ A nyone How many of you have ever been to the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held each January in Las Vegas OK how many of you have even heard of the CES Just a few huh W ell for those of you who have not heard of it it is the world s largest electronic gadgets way to wear your smartphone is in a smartwatch which is essentially an extension of your phone. They do not talk to the Internet themselves but they talk to your phone and can provide quick access to text messages emails contact lists etc. Of course you do generally need to lift your arm to see the screen but I hope that is easier than pulling your phone out of a pocket holster or purse. You can also talk to the watch when on a phone call. Hello Dick Tracy showcase of upcoming or potentially upcoming devices appliances etc. In one city you can see what types of tools and toys you might be using as much in a few years as you use your cell phone today. Among the items that caught my attention this year were a lot of innovative cell phone tablet and TV products being touted as the next big thing. Like curved screens. Smartphones with permanently curved screens are already on the market but Samsung introduced a TV that actually switches between flat and curved at the touch of a button The one I read about was an 85 inch screen with 4 times the resolution of the 1080i TV in your living room right now. No price was given but if you have to ask ... Another popular feature at the show this year was wearable gadgets. Eyeglasses with built-in screens that allow you to read the same data you would on a smartphone already exist. Like Google Glass. But a safer May 1 2014 Test Results Mailed If you have not received your test results by May 15 contact registrations iche-idaho. org. ____________ This test is not aligned with Common Core May 1 - August 1 2015 Testing Registration Open Home automation is a growing trend as well. Not only can you use your smartphone or tablet to turn on or off almost any light in your house lock or unlock your doors or adjust your thermostat but a lot of that can even be done without you having to open an app Some examples are in order A smart thermostat that learns your daily patterns and determines when to raise or lower the temperature - with little or no direct input from you. A refrigerator that sends you a text message at work to let you know that the meal you had planned for tonight Go to for online registration to print a mail-in form and for information concerning March 2015 annual standardized testing. Online registration closes midnight August 1st. Registrations postmarked after August 1st cannot be accepted. Fifth through twelfth grade students with qualifying scores are nominated by ICHE to Who s Who. Ninth through twelfth grade students with qualifying scores are designated Summa Cum Laude Scholars. Qualifying high school students are entitled to wear graduation honor cords. 28 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 SUBSCRIPTION Today Renew Your YES I would like to continue my subscription to CHOIS Connection By Ken Barnes 1 YEAR Name Street Box requires a few ingredients that you are low on. As you approach the door into your house your phone tells the lock who you are and it is automatically unlocked. And if someone else comes to your door the lock takes a picture of them and sends it to your phone so you can tell who they are safely behind the stilllocked door. There are even new LED light bulbs that allow you to not only turn them on or off or dim them but to also change their color from your smart device. Wow I am just getting started and already running out of room. I have not even mentioned solar cars autonomous cars (they do not need a driver) TVs that cover an entire wall a thermal imaging camera adapter for your smartphone (everyone will want one of these ) tabletop computer screens (the screen is the table top) and on and on and on ... Who knows what will be there next year Since 2003 gadget-loving geek Ken Barnes and his lovely bride Cindy have been homeschooling 4 of the most creative gadgets God ever created. 10 City State Zip Code Phone Email Mail this form and checks to CHOIS P.O. Box 45062 Boise ID 83711 or go to to subscribe online CHOIS does not want financial hardship to keep anyone from being connected so please accept a complimentary subscription if you are unable to pay. CHoIS IS SprIng CleAnIng In an effort to be good stewards CHOIS is cleaning up their mailing list. We will no longer be mailing the magazine to our current list. If you want to continue to receive it you will need to renew your subscription by mail or online at http chois connection subscribe . We ask our subscribers to cover the cost of their own printing and postage by paying 10 for an annual subscription. Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 29 Christopher Gilliam GRI Graduate of the Realtor Institute Associate Broker Realtor Licensed as an Agent in 06 as a Broker in 09 Dad of 3 homeschoolers - Ages 9 12 & 14 Buyers Full Service Broker but you don t pay Sellers - FREE What s My Home Worth report EXPERIENCED - PROFESSIONAL - SINCERE o Old and new homes o 70 000 to 700 000 homes Christopher Gilliam GRI FREE to CHOIS Connection Readers Search the MLS Like an Agent at 30 CHOIS COnneCtIOn Spring 2014 208-899-0779 The market has changed Interest rates are low It s time to make a move... Call Christopher today HSF Ambassadors help families homeschool through hard times. Visit volunteer to learn more. Home School Foundation ... the charitable arm of HSLDA 10535 Spring 2014 CHOIS COnneCtIOn 31 Christian Homeschoolers Of Idaho State P.O. Box 45062 Boise Idaho 83711 YOUR SUBSCRIPTION TO CHOIS Connection IS ABOUT TO EXPIRE Please renew by mail (see page 29) or online at http chois-connection subscribe us not grow weary while doing good for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6 9 And let June 5th-7th 2014 HARVEST HOME EDUCATION 16th Annual Christian Homeschoolers of Idaho State A Bountiful Register early to save 10 STATE HOMESCHOOL CONVENTION At College Church of the Nazarene Nampa Idaho